Wine Events in November & December!


  1. Details of price (it won’t be expensive, for sure) and time are not yet available, but I’d advise putting this date in your diary now! Friday 18th November I’m co-hosting (with the excellent Nicola Thornton, founder of Spanish Palate wine distributors) a tasting for the launch of the new line of wines called Botas de Barro. These wines will be stocked exclusively in the north Costa Blanca area at Bodegas Leopoldo’s Vinali, in Ondara. Please watch this space for more details!

2. The following night, Saturday 19th November, at Javea Arenal’s Restaurante I-Sushi I will be presenting a wine pairing event, with music, where Japanese Cuisine meets Spanish Wine!


Claire-Marie ( will be singing and playing the flute during an excellent evening where we will be tasting five Japanese dishes, hot and cold, each paired with a selected Spanish Wine! Starts 19:30 hrs.

Amazing value for such a night out – just 25€!

Please e-mail to reserve our places, as soon as you can – it’s gonna be busy!

3. In Moraira centre the new Gourmet Wine and Deli La Lluna is the venue for a Fine Wine and Gourmet nibbles night that I’ll be presenting on Thursday 1st December. We start at 19:30 hrs and we’ll be enjoying 5 quality wines with a selection of different gourmet tastes, spotlighting that which is available in  the shop – you are sure to find some great ideas for Christmas presents! The cost is just 10€! At the time of writing we are over half-full, please don’t delay in reserving –

There’s a pale pink rose fragrance when this wine is poured which also develops into pink marshmallow and bubblegum aromas and then very quickly into delightful strawberry fruit first, with raspberry and red currant close behind . . .



Students of Cava will know that the eponymous two names above are seriously big hitters in the world of Spain’s famous sparkling wines. For, approaching 140 years, these two names have been inextricably linked with Cava – the latter because it was in fact a same family Raventós that started the bubbles rolling towards the end of the 19th Century, and the latter, linked by marriage with the former, because it is one of the two best known Cava producers in the world!


You can imagine my delight therefore when I received recently the first of a number of samples from this large group, which is another example of how big is beautiful in the wine world of Spain. However, I’m not going to start today’s Cork Talking about fizz – it’s perhaps not so well known, that these great names and this impressive company also make still wines.


Viñas de Anna Flor de Rosa 2015 comes in a shapely, transparent bottle which allows the consumer to see this charming and beautiful Provencal Rosé coloured Spanish rosado in all its glory. Readers will have already noticed, without my prompting, a definite trend towards rosados of this very pale pink colour. Just look on the wine shops’ shelves and you’ll see far more than we used to see in years gone by.


The Spanish wine fraternity is not slow to accommodate fashion and as rosé coloured wines have been to the fore internationally in recent years, Spanish producers have acted accordingly, though certainly without compromising quality. For me, this further illustrates that Spain has to be the world capital for rosé wine! An already extensive flavour, aroma and colour profile has been extended to accommodate more of these very pale offerings.


There’s a pale pink rose fragrance when this wine is poured which also develops into pink marshmallow and bubblegum aromas and then very quickly into delightful strawberry fruit first, with raspberry and red currant close behind. In seconds these primary, secondary and tertiary perfumes blend together producing such an aromatic whole that you just have to take a sip!


The varieties are Pinot Noir, which apart from the colour, adds a little red wine body and flavour, plus the Cataluña indigenous, Trepat, which adds fruit also, though slightly darker red fruit, like loganberry, as well as elegance to the wine on the palate.


Viñas de Anna Flor de Rosa is the first Codorníu still rosado wine – but I bet it won’t be the last! A super start.


Blanc de Blanc sparkling wines are those which are made exclusively from white wine grapes – in the case of Champagne, where the phrase was first coined, this essentially means Chardonnay. However, here in Spain the Blanc de Blanc Cava maker has more varieties with which to play! Whilst 70% of Anna de Codorníu Blanc de Blanc is indeed Chardonnay, there is also 15% Parellada as well as roughly 7% each of Macabeo and Xarel.lo. Although proportionally small, these three stalwarts of the Cava industry nevertheless make a significant contribution to the finished article.


So too do to the 15 months ‘en rima’ (bottle aging on the lees) which the Cava has undergone before its release onto the market. This therefore makes the wine a ‘Reserva’, so we can expect greater body and depth of flavour as well as the raison d’etre of sparkling wine – its clean freshness. Reserva style wines are also better to pair with various dishes too.


At 11º/litre of residual sugar, it’s at the top end of the Brut sugar spectrum (12º is maximum) so this Cava is going to particularly please those who find some Brut cavas to be a little too austere. It’s full in the mouth with a passing pineapple fruit note coming, of course from the Chardonnay.


An oft forgotten style of cava is the Dulce, or sweet, style. Well made sweet cava, like the Codorníu Dulce Anna, is not at all cloying. The same applies to dessert wines too. There is still acidity in this Anna which allows it to be served for those with a sweet tooth as perhaps an aperitif, but it really comes into its own when it’s paired, as it’s meant to be, with desserts. I enjoyed mine with Chocolate Cake – at midday too!


Contact Colin: Facebook Colin Harkness Twitter @colinonwine Youtube Colin Harkness On Wine


Good news: the Fine Wine & Gourmet Dine Programme will return on Sunday 30th October, extended by popular demand from 18:00 – 20:00 hrs, Spanish Time, on Total FM 91.8 and online Great wines, food, music and chat! Please join me and make your Sunday’s even better!

Partners in Wine

The perfect present for those who have an interest in wine, and how wonderful that each purchase of one of their pink coloured, easy to use, Swan corkscrews ensures a donation to Breast Cancer Research!



I’m delighted to have welcomed a number of prestigious new sponsors to my website during the last few months. Each has an obvious link to the vinous events, presentations, visits etc in which I’m always involved. Therefore, it’s very apt to say that we are ‘Partners in Wine’!


Bodegas Castaño, one of the leading lights of DO Yecla, is a dynamic, pro-active, multi-medal winning winery. There are many occasions, and indeed wines, that I could tell you about, with this particular ‘partner in wine’: the private tasting of wines made from their experimental vineyards; a tank sample of fermenting Chardonnay with Head winemaker, Mariano; filming in the vineyards for my TV series and having a break for an amazing ‘almuerzo’; and lots more. But space, restricts me.


Suffice to say that it is from Bodegas Castaño that I highly recommend a wine for Christmas (not long to go, you know!). Casa Cisca is the Castaño flagship wine. Made from 100% Old Vine Monastrell, this wine is stunning!


Restaurante Nox in Javea can be considered a Gourmet Paradise for Gastronomes like myself! Luxury is combined with elegance; professionalism with charm, and fun; the finest of cuisine with an enviable wine list. Readers will know that I’ve presented a number of wine pairing evenings at Nox. Of these there have been several outstanding wine pairings. For example the Finca del Fondo Rosado with Head Chef, Mark’s, amazing Cream of Seta with Chestnuts and Trufle Oil; and, simply for the sheer excellence of the wine, Bodegas Hispano Suizas’ Sauvignon Blanc!

A splendid evening at Restaurante Nox, on Javea's Arenal, pairing Gourmet Tapas with Fine Wine!
A splendid evening at Restaurante Nox, on Javea’s Arenal, pairing Gourmet Tapas with Fine Wine!

I’m not sure there could be a better ‘fit’ than a wine website with a wine accessories company, so I was delighted to partner Avina Wine Tools! Elegance, beauty and efficiency all combine perfectly in the design and artisan manufacture of the wine bottle openers and stoppers supplied by this socially aware and forward thinking company, whose further development ideas readers will be able to see by clicking the logo (as with all sponsors) on my website.


The perfect present for those who have an interest in wine, and how wonderful that each purchase of one of their pink coloured, easy to use, Swan corkscrews ensures a donation to Breast Cancer Research!


My next new sponsor, Lazenne, specialises in Wine Travel Accessories, which are really quite amazing! Those who attended a tasting of mine in Javea will remember my walking across the restaurant, as if in an airport or train station, easily pulling behind me, the perfect answer to transporting wine bottles!


This wine luggage has been specially designed with airport authorities, including security, being in on the concept from the start. The result is that easily transportable luggage, even when full of heavy sparkling wine bottles, has been officially approved by all the world’s main airlines.


There’s a, mostly incorrect, perception that wines from specialist wine shops, like Vinalia, Bodegas Leopoldo, will be more expensive than supermarket wines. Sometimes yes, but the difference is that such shops are passionate about their well chosen wines, across the price spectrum – and they look after them! Furthermore, they are aware of the supermarket price point and very often compete with it in order not to lose sales to the larger enterprises.

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The huge array of wines (and spirits) at Vinalia, Bodegas Leopoldo, Ondara is certain to include wines of your choice – that’s if you are a wine consumer like myself as well as if you are a restaurant looking for distinctive, and different wines! I remember, for example, my first sight and taste of the brilliantly labeled Dehesa del Ñañdu, made with Garnacha, and having had 4 months in oak. On the nose there is an initial strawberry aroma. It’s rich and full with a marked intensity and well priced – plus it’s available only from Vinalia!


Finally, and rather nicely linked with Vinalia, Botas del Barro! Regular readers will be aware of the Nicola Thornton story. A degree toting, Spanish fluent Sheffield lass makes a major contribution to Export sales of a DO Toro winery; she’s headhunted by a larger, more quality conscious concern, travels the globe, several times, adding over 60 new markets to the Export portfolio; then decides to open her own wine business.

botas de barro capsule botas

Working with boutique wineries in several different areas of Spain, Nicola and her winemaker partner, Alvaro Martin, now have a very impressive portfolio of wines under the heading, Botas del Baro. On the 18th November, Nicola, Jose Antonio of Vinalia and I will be present a Botas del Barro tasting to launch their arrival in Ondara. Details soon!

botas de barro verdejo con capsule

Contact Colin: (where you’ll see details of the above)  Twitter @colinonwine  Facebook Colin Harkness Youtube Colin Harkness On Wine


NB The next Fine Wine & Gourmet Dine Programme on Total FM 91.8 and is scheduled for Sunday October 30th, with an extra thirty minutes – by popular demand. 18:00 – 20:00 hrs Spanish Time